The NMMU Madibaz hockey team have fallen out of contention for the top placings in the inaugural Varsity Cup men’s tournament, regardless of their storming finish against UCT in Monday’s match.
The Madibaz, with SA star Ignatius Malgraaf and Jason Doherty-Bigara notching superb goals, registered a stunning 5-0 bonus-point victory over their Cape Town counterparts.
However, earlier losses to University of Johannesburg (UJ) and Stellenbosch (Maties) saw the PE team drop from third to fifth on the log at the conclusion of the second weekend of matches.
With one match left before the play-offs in Johannesburg this weekend, the Madibaz are sitting on 14 points and cannot catch the top four.
In what should be a fascinating finale on Saturday, the top four sides – UJ, Stellenbosch, Pretoria and Free State – all have 20 points.
Playing in Stellenbosch, NMMU opened the second weekend with a 2-0 defeat at the hands of UJ, and then they went down 3-2 to Maties.
Critically, the Madibaz conceded a 3-0 lead against Maties before fighting back to pick up a defensive bonus point for ending within a goal of their opponents’ score.
However, the six-point margin means the best they can end is fifth, while Rhodes will be targeting a move away from the bottom of the log. – Herald PE
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